San Mateo County Sheriff Greg Munks and the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors celebrated the new Maple Street Correctional Center today with a ribbon cutting at the 260,000-square-foot modern facility that boasts environmental design, expanded in-custody program space and the complete shift of female inmates from their current dilapidated jail.

“This project was never about simply building a larger jail to house more inmates. Instead, this facility represents our commitment to improving the lives of the men and women who are in our care and custody. We will do so by conducting meaningful assessments of their needs and by providing innovative programming to improve their chance for a successful reentry into our community,” Sheriff Greg Munks said.

Tuesday’s ribbon-cutting is the culmination of nearly a decade of planning, community outreach and construction. The Jail Planning Unit formed in 2007 in response to significant overcrowding at the Maguire Correctional Facility which houses male inmates and extensive maintenance issues including flooding at the Women’s Correctional Facility on Maple Street.

The result is an 832-bed, three-story building at 1300 Maple St. in Redwood City with pending LEED certification for its environmentally conscious design, increased flexible classroom space and a commercial kitchen dedicated for culinary training. The extra room also allows the TAILS dog training program, once limited to men due to space, to include female inmates and programs like Choices to expand.

“For many years, the overcrowding and lack of programming in the women’s jail desperately needed to be addressed. This new facility will provide new promise and opportunities for both the men and women in our criminal justice system and in turn the hope of a safer community for all of San Mateo County,” said District Five Supervisor Adrienne Tissier.

Board of Supervisors President Warren Slocum said the new jail is designed with the mindset that the County is temporarily housing inmates and providing the opportunity to earn the building blocks for a brighter future.

“It’s not a warehouse with a revolving door,” Slocum said. “Our goal is to help our inmates return to their families, return to their communities and be able to lead productive lives.”

Occupancy will begin March 19, 2016 with female inmates and transitional housing occupants. Approximately one month later, male inmates at Maguire begin their move. Maximum security males will remain at Maguire as will some pre-trial and pre-sentenced inmates. All bookings will also be done at Maguire.